Saturday, 18/11/2017 | : : UTC-8
Skate Today

Oi Snags Junior Men’s Pewter Medal

Curran Oi

Curran Oi, 16, was one of the surprise finalists in the ISU Junior Grand Prix series this season. Oi, whose win at the Gardena Spring Trophy earlier in 2006 got him appointed to the U. S. international JGP team, took a silver medal in Courchevel, France and placed fourth in Oslo, Norway to qualify for the Final. He finished fifth in his first trip to the Final.

Oi’s goal for the season was to “keep getting better and skate well,” he said. “I’d like to be top four at Nationals.” He accomplished that goal when he won the pewter medal for fourth. Oi finished sixth in juvenile boys and seventh in intermediate men at U. S. Junior Nationals, then took home the bronze medal in novice men in 2006.

Oi began skating when he was six after seeing the sport on television. His younger sister, Bryna, also took up the sport and earned the bronze medal at the national level in intermediate ladies this year. Early on, Oi tried gymnastics but didn’t like it as much as skating. “I also tried some team sports, but I preferred the individual sports,” Oi said.

By the time he was eleven, Oi had landed a double axel and within a few months he had landed his first two triple jumps, the triple salchow and triple toe loop. By now he has landed everything through the triple lutz and is working on the triple axel. “I’ve been trying the triple axel and came close last May before I had to start getting ready for the season,” he said. Oi uses a triple lutz-triple toe combination in his short program and adds a double axel-double toe-double toe and a triple flip-double toe in the long. “The triple flip feels the best,” he said of his favorite jump. “I really like jumping and spinning.”

Oi, who lives in Wellesley, Ma, has trained at the Skating Club of Boston with Mark Mitchell and Peter Johansson for over nine years. “I started at Babson Skating Center, but the rink wasn’t very competitive and I wanted to try something else,” he said. “I like the community at SCOB. We all have each other to count on.” Oi trains for three hours a day, five days a week and spends another three hours a week doing off ice training.

Jamie Isley choreographed Oi’s programs. He usually changes one program each year. This season, he used the same music as he used last season, “Children of Sanchez” by Chuck Mangione, for the short but used new music, “Freedom” by Michael W. Smith, for the long. “Mark picked that out for me,” he said. “He thought it would be a good fit for me. Last year I used Robin Hood and it had a similar theme. It’s kind of a story but not with strict guidelines.” For an exhibition program, Oi is using Van Halen’s “Dance the Night Away”. Off ice, Oi said, “I don’t listen to music that much, but when I do, I like 80’s rock.”

His off ice interests include watching professional tennis and playing an occasional game with his father, reading science fiction books and the classics, doing manipulative puzzles, watching videos and traveling. “I like to travel and skating’s given me a lot of opportunities,” he said. “I really liked Courchevel and Gardena. They were nice quiet resort ski towns. And I enjoyed seeing Venice after the competition in Italy.” Oi has also traveled extensively with his family in addition to regular visits to see his extended family in Hawaii. When in Hawaii, he visits the Ice Palace skating rink in Honolulu and tries out the many beaches on Oahu.

Oi is a sophomore honor student at Wellesley High School, where he enjoys studying math and science. He won the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth Award for mathematics in eighth grade and plans to study alternative forms of energy in college.

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